# Is hell exothermic or endothermic?

1. Dec 10, 2005

### sameandnot

Dr. Schambaugh, of the University of Oklahoma School of Chemical Engineering, Final Exam question for May of 1997. Dr. Schambaugh is known for asking questions such as, "why do airplanes fly?" on his final exams. His one and only final exam question in May 1997 for his Momentum, Heat and Mass Transfer II class was: "Is hell exothermic or endothermic? Support your answer with proof."

Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs using Boyle's Law or some variant. One student, however, wrote the following:

"First, We postulate that if souls exist, then they must have some mass. If they do, then a mole of souls can also have a mass. So, at what rate are souls moving into hell and at what rate are souls leaving? I think we can safely assume that once a soul gets to hell, it will not leave.

Therefore, no souls are leaving. As for souls entering hell, let's look at the different religions that exist in the world today. Some of these religions state that if you are not a member of their religion, then you will go to hell. Since there are more than one of these religions and people do not belong to more than one religion, we can project that all people and souls go to hell. With birth and death rates as they are, we can expect the number of souls in hell to increase exponentially.

Now, we look at the rate of change in volume in hell. Boyle's Law states that in order for the temperature and pressure in hell to stay the same, the ratio of the mass of souls and volume needs to stay constant. Two options exist:

If hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate at which souls enter hell, then the temperature and pressure in hell will increase until all hell breaks loose.
If hell is expanding at a rate faster than the increase of souls in hell, then the temperature and pressure will drop until hell freezes over.
So which is it? If we accept the quote given to me by Theresa Manyan during Freshman year, "that it will be a cold night in hell before I sleep with you" and take into account the fact that I still have NOT succeeded in having sexual relations with her, then Option 2 cannot be true...Thus, hell is exothermic."

The student, Tim Graham, got the only A.

2. Dec 10, 2005

### Pengwuino

:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

3. Dec 10, 2005

### Tide

Did anyone notice that Theresa Manyan is an anagram for "Many here, Satan!" ;)

4. Dec 10, 2005

### Staff: Mentor

I would have never noticed that. Tell me you did not just notice that yourself.

I first saw this about 8 years ago, it's posted up in Science Jokes, but since it's buried in there and a lot of younguns haven't seen it, I'll let this stay.

5. Dec 10, 2005

### Tide

I read the post, looked at the name a second time and the anagram just popped out of it.

6. Dec 10, 2005

### fourier jr

"There are no physicists in the hottest parts of hell, because the existence of a "hottest" part implies a temperature difference, and any marginally competent physicist would immediately use this to run a heat engine and make some other part of hell comfortably cool. This is obviously impossible." -- Richard Davisson